Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Once My Home

I am back in the Washington, DC area. I left here in May 2010. It feels so strange to be back here. This was once my home - my world - my scenic byway - for 20 years! I came here immediately after college and left at 43. That is a lot of life and a lot of changes.

But it is no longer my home now. I don't have a house to go to. I don't have my car here. I don't know what is going on with the roads, the neighborhoods, the old haunts. I don't know about the new construction, the latest restaurants and bars, the good stores. I don't know the gossip of the city. I haven't been perusing the City Paper, or watching the local news, or reading the Washington Post.

I flew into National Airport yesterday afternoon and saw the familiar sites from up above. I watched DC pass, then circling back over Alexandria and Crystal City, the Potomac River frozen. Then a drive down Route 66, and then the toll road, and then Route 7 towards Leesburg - out to Landsdowne Resort for our meetings. I was here last year for meetings, but back then I had a house in Takoma Park to return to. Now when my meetings are over, I will head to Crystal City to another hotel, and then to downtown Washington, DC to yet another hotel.

This week I will stay in hotels. I will travel in taxis and the metro - no car here. I will do touristy things - visit the National Gallery, shopping in Georgetown, drinks in Dupont Circle, dinner at a restaurant with buzz - this weekend before I fly out on Sunday, back to what is now my new home. Sure, these are things that I also did when I lived here. But it is different.

I am now a tourist in what was once my home.

Shot out the front door of my old house in Takoma Park - February 2010

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